Coaching Turns

Here is a great example of what happens when you apply RPM principles of movement to pirouettes. Master Teacher Wes Chapman coached this student regarding preparation, alignment, coil, release, centripetal force when performing pirouettes. Nine pirouettes later “voila!”
We find that if you know “how” to teach students to apply certain concepts through verbal cues and when they actually put into practice these principles while in class, they will achieve a consistent outcome.  THIS is how RPM helps dance teachers.

A “relevé” is a vertical action which is caused by an upward release, and downward thrust, with a two-way resistance. A turn is a horizontal action around a central axis, and is caused by a gathering of energy in the direction to which you are going to turn, a slight reversal in the opposite direction, and an impetus in the direction to which you are going to turn. Impetus is a motivating force in the direction to which you are turning. In other words, you go up to go down, to go up! And you go right to go left, to right! (When turning right of course).

The combination of these two motivating actions, produce a spiraling pattern of the body. At the moment of impetus, the student should feel a sharp, straight line action of the ribs on the supporting side, back in the direction they are going to turn. This action should not displace the posture or balance.

A pirouette impetus is centrifugal. But then to counteract centrifugal force, you need to gather energy into centripetal force. Otherwise the centrifugal force will take you off your center.